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She made Cote d’Ivoire proud at the event after winning two silver medals in the ladies’ 100m and 200m races. Upon her arrival, she expressed dip delight for her records as well as expressed determination to work hard for a gold medal in the next edition of the Olympic games. “I’m happy for what I did in my first World championship. I am running for my country Cote d’Ivoire. It’s the natural choice I’ve made. I will not change my nationality”, she said. In should be noted that Ahoure is the first African athlete to be vice champion in the 100m race.
The Ivory Coast's Murielle Ahoure made history on Monday in becoming the first female African sprinter to win a medal in the history of the World Athletics Championships in the 100 meters.
The 25-year-old is keen to wire another chapter of history by becoming the first African woman to win a medal in the 200m.
She is the daughter of General Mathias Doue a former chief of staff of the Ivorian army until he was sacked in 2004 by ex-president Laurent Gbagbo Those heats begin Thursday with the final on Friday.
Ahoure, who reached both the 100m and 200m finals at last year's Olympics, showed in relegating defending world champion Carmelita Jeter into third in the 100m that she has the mental strength to cope with the major finals.
Ahoure has remained very much an Ivorian despite a bohemian lifestyle from an early age which saw her sent to France aged three and then on to the United States where she was educated.
Indeed one of her ambitions is to be a role model to other African athletes and stop them from moving abroad and accepting payment to change nationality and run for other countries.
“This medal was for the Ivory Coast, no other country,'' said Ahoure, who has five siblings.
“I think it is sad so many African athletes feel it is necessary to move abroad and run for other countries. At the same time I understand as they have to make a living and an athlete's life is a precarious one, one lives with the ever present fear of injury which can end your career.''
While Ahoure is grateful to the United States for having provided her with an education and with her future career assured as a lawyer, she said she wants her exploits on the track to persuade other Africans to follow her example.--AFP
World Champion Amantle Montsho of Botswana and Côte d’Ivoire’s Murielle Ahoure stormed to national records while Nigeria’s Blessing Okagbare soared over seven metres twice at the Herculis Meeting – Diamond League in Monaco.
Montsho, won the 400m in a national record of 49.33 secs, the fastest time in the world this year, a national record and a Diamond League record, in front of the near-capacity crowd at the Stade Louis II stadium.
Stephanie McPherson of Jamaica clocked 49.92 secs for second, with American Francena McCorory third in 49.96 secs, both lifetime bests.
Afterwards Montsho said: ” I did not expect to run this quick, honestly.”
“For some reason I always seem to run fast here and I love the crowd’s support. Now I really need to take a rest and focus on Moscow. I really want to be on that podium.”
Okagbare had flighted around 6.85 – 6.98 all season and showed she meant business early on with a 6.86m first-round lead in the women’s long jump.
The Nigerian then produced a wind-assisted 7.04m (2.1m/s) in round two and then a lifetime best legal jump of 7.00m (0.0m/s) in the third-round.
Russian Darya Klishina finished second with a 2nd round jump of 6.98m (+2.4m/s) with Britain’s Shara Proctor managed 6.74m (+0.6m/s) in the final round to take third place.
“I would say nine out of ten. It’s a PB for me,” said Okagbare.
“My fourth and fifth jumps were better but I fouled them. My seven metres jump was far from perfect, and we’re working on a lot of different things.”
Ivory Coast’s Murielle Ahoure won women’s 200m in a national record of 22.24 secs while Tiffany Townsend of the United States was second in a personal best of 22.26 secs and Jamaican Olympic champion Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce was third in 22.28 secs.
Murielle Ahoure of Ivory Coast clocked a new national record on her way to pushing Olympic 200m champion Allyson Felix into second place at the Rome Golden Gala, the fifth leg in the 14-event Diamond League series, on Thursday.
Last month Ahoure had clocked what was then a world-leading time of 22.47sec in Ponce, but the African made the most of the absence of several top names to clock a new national record of 22.36.
Felix, the Olympic champion from London, finished second in 22.64, three tenths behind her best time of the season, 22.36, set last week in Beijing.
With the world championships in Moscow the big objective this year, Felix was philosophical about her setback.
"It's an interesting year for me: I'm trying to piece things together and make the team in a few weeks," said the American.
"I'm taking a different approach this year, taking more time off, so I was a little off.
"I'm trying to make the (US) team, run the 100 and 200 (in Moscow).
"I'll stay patient. It's what happens down the season that counts."
The women's 200m field was missing a number of top names including Veronica Campbell-Brown of Jamaica and compatriots Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, the Olympic silver medallist in London, and Sherone Simpson.
Bulgaria's Ivet Lalova finished third in a season's best of 22.78.
Ahoure's win means she takes the lead of the Diamond League standings in the discipline, in which Felix is now fourth.
Ivorian sprinter Murielle Ahoure on Saturday won the 100m and 200m events at of the Ponce Meeting, in the South of Puerto Rico.
She first won the 100m event in 11’09”, her season’s best, ahead of Barbara Pierre and Alexandra Anderson.
In the 200m, she registered the fifth best time of the season as she crossed the finish line in 22.47 ahead of Lauryn Williams et Candyce McGrone.
The Ivorian burst on the international scene last year when she won a silver medal in the 60m event at the World Indoor Championships before qualifying for the 100m and 200m finals of the London 2012 Olympics where she finished 7 and 6 respectively.
Murielle Ahoure has given Ivorians something else to care about besides football; her meteoric rise in the 100m and 200m and her national record breaking performances at the 2012 London Olympic Games, where she made both finals, catapulting her to national and international recognition.
"It's just mind-blowing, everyone has been telling me that they have never seen anything like this and for the first time ever, the world didn't revolve around football and it was all about track in my country. It was the first time that everyone stopped and watched track and field. It's unbelievable and (has) changed my life," Ahoure recounted.
Ahoure, who will line up beside local girl Veronica Campbell-Brown, American Allyson Felix and Trinidad and Tobago's Kelly-Ann Baptiste in the 100m at tomorrow's Jamaica International Invitational inside the National Stadium, seems intent on disrupting the female sprinting hierarchy - starting with her first outing on Jamaican soil.
"I am very excited and I am just thrilled to be here. I am training hard and I want to see what I have in store for the 100m this year, but I feel great and I am happy to be here," Ahoure told The Gleaner yesterday. "I can't wait to feel the energy inside the stadium. I have always heard the horns and screams when I watch the meet on YouTube and it's gonna be cool and I'm hoping to feel some of that energy."
She and her mother will both be looking forward to some of that energy as 'Mommy Murielle' Chantal Doue will also be in the stands cheering on her daughter - or will she?
"She is very supportive, but she normally covers her eyes when I race and pray a lot. That's how she experiences my races, but she will do all the screaming afterwards," Ahoure laughed.
The 25-year-old is certainly in bright spirits these days and why shouldn't she be, with her 6.99 seconds 60m clocking being the fastest time on the indoor circuit this year.
"I am really excited, everything is happening so fast," she beamed.
Olympic sprint champion Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce was upstaged in her first appearance at an indoor meeting, finishing second behind Murielle Ahoure in the 60 meters at the Birmingham Grand Prix on Saturday.
The race was hyped as the resumption of the rivalry between Fraser-Pryce and world 100 champion Carmelita Jeter, but Ahoure powered clear to win in a personal-best time of 6.99 seconds.
"My goal is obviously the world championship outdoors, so we've just been training for the 100 meters," said Ahoure of the Ivory Coast, who finished seventh in the Olympic final last year. "It's so cool to come out here in the middle of training and drop a time like this, it's crazy. It tells me it's going to be a really, really good year."
Fraser-Pryce ran 7.09, with Jeter coming fourth in 7.18 behind her compatriot from the United States, Barbara Pierre.
U.S. sprinter Michael Rodgers ran a season-best time of 6.53 seconds to win the men's 60, holding off Nesta Carter of Jamaica. Antoine Adams of St. Kitts and Nevis was third.
Mo Farah, the Olympic champion at 5,000 and 10,000, gave the home fans something to cheer by pulling clear in the final lap to win the 3,000 in 7 minutes, 42 seconds.
Farah, one of the stars of the track at the London Games, will not compete at the European indoor championships in Goteborg, Sweden, from March 1-3, instead focusing on running in the New Orleans half-marathon on Feb. 24. He said on Saturday he would be stepping up in distance and aiming to run his first full marathon in London next year.
"I think practice will make perfect," Farah said. "The more practice you can do you can get it right."
Genzebe Dibaba of Ethiopia attempted to light up one of the biggest indoor meets of the year by breaking the world record in the women's 1,500 but came up short by 2.5 seconds after a solo run from halfway.
Success in the Olympics, for the United States of America and Jamaica, is the end result of a long preparation. It all begins with the identification of those boys and girls who have what it takes to become the next Murielle Ahoure and Ben Meite, or even the next Bolt and Blake.
Murielle Ahoure (7th on 100m in London 2012) and Ben Meite (champion of Africa on 100m) brought their support to a day of detection of young athletes. They tell the story to StarAfrica in this video.
Let's hope that some of these young runners can make it very far. The Olympics in Rio, 2016, are on the horizon!
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